2024 EnvironMentors Science Fair and Awards Ceremony

The Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE) was pleased to host the 2024 EnvironMentors National Science Fair and Awards Ceremony on Monday, June 3, 2024 at the U.S. Department of Agriculture - Jamie L. Whitten Building Patio. 

This event was a day filled with inspiration and discovery as our EnvironMentors students from across the United States presented their research projects and competed for awards and honorable recognitions. The EnvironMentors Fair brought together over 75 participants and supporters, including high school researchers, mentors, parents, poster evaluators, speakers and other guests. Our speakers, including representatives from US federal agencies, such as USDA, DOE, EPA and NASA, along with environmental NGOs and past EnvironMentors participants. Continue reading to see our award winners and explore our panel sessions. To learn more about the EnvironMentors program, click here.


Join us in celebrating our Award Winners

Participating students worked hard over the academic year to complete an environmental science project of their choice and the fair is the annual, culminating event of the EnvironMentors program. Students were eager to present their work, share what they have discovered, and compete for awards.

Young man on stage holding award certificate

1st Place Overall

Raiyan Bakshi, Pennsylvania State University Chapter

Project Title: Nourishing Nature with Natural Nutrients!

Young woman on stage with award certificate

2nd Place Overall

Elsie Umbel, Pennsylvania State University Chapter

Project Title: Genomic Analysis of Pesticide Resistance in Two-Spotted Spider Mites, Tetranychus urticae, on Hops

Young man on stage holding award certificate

3rd Place Overall

Yahya Mohammed, Future City Inc. Chapter

Project Title: Beyond the Flush: The Journey of Enterococcus and Fecal Coliform in Our Environment

Young man on stage holding award certificate

Sustainability Award

Aaron Vivanco, Future City Inc. Chapter

Project Title: An Analysis of the Clean Air Act’s Impact on the NJ Metropolitan Region

Young woman on stage holding award certificate

Public Health Award

Jenesis Beavert, Heritage University Chapter

Project Title: Is It Safe To Bring Back Our Traditional Hunting and Gathering at Hanford?

Young man on stage holding award certificate

Community Impact Award

Malachi Mitchell, Pennsylvania State University Chapter

Project Title: The Most Gullible Element is Easily Lead: Comparing ...Content in Boalsburg, PA and University Park, PA

Group of young adults on stage holding award certificate

Presentation Award

Emily Richards, Adam Abouzied, Bathlene Destin, and Dory Madrid, Future City Inc. Chapter

Project Title: Radiations From Electronic Appliances and Environment

Young man on stage holding award certificate

One Health Award

Ned Tillequots, Heritage University Chapter

Project Title: Burrowing Owls Population At The Hanford Site, Washington

Young woman on stage holding award certificate

Environmental Justice Award

Christine Quiltanenock, Heritage University Chapter

Project Title: Contamination in the Soils of Mice Burrows and Ant Mounds at the Hanford Site

A collage of four images from the EnvironMentors National Fair

Event Itinerary

*All times are in Eastern Time.

Access speaker and panelist biographies here.

10:00AM: Welcome Remarks

Welcome Remarks provided by Kimberly Winter, National Director of Conservation Education in State, Private and Tribal Forestry at U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service.

10:30AM to 12:00PM: Poster Evaluation Session

During the Poster Evaluation Session, EnvironMentors students presented their research project posters to volunteer evaluators and guests. 

12:00PM to 1:30PM: Catered Lunch Provided to Guests

During lunch, GCSE hosted a fireside chat titled, Exploring Mentorship's Influence on Environmental Science, Diversity & Innovation, discussing the impact and importance of mentorship in empowering future leaders.

Speakers included:Collage of 6 images of the EnvironMentors Fair

  • Kristina Douglass, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Climate at Columbia University
  • Ty Todd, Undergraduate student at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and past EnvironMentors student
  • Facilitated by Tom Richard, Ph.D., Interim Executive Director at the Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE)

1:30PM to 3:15PM: EnvironMentors Awards Ceremony

During the EnvironMentors Awards Ceremony, the program featured:

Welcome Remarks provided by Tom Richard, Ph.D., Interim Executive Director at the Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE).

Keynote Address provided by Aida Collins, Deputy Director of Minority Programs, Office of Energy Justice and Equity at U.S. Department of Energy.

Panel Discussion titled, Empowering Change: Bridging Science and Communities for a Healthier Planet. Speakers included:

  • Denise Hill, Water Resources Program Coordinator at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

  • Kim Noble, Senior Advisor in the Office of Public Engagement and Environmental Education at U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

  • Joe Toolan, Senior Manager of America the Beautiful for All Coalition Strategy and Development at Green Latinos

  • Facilitated by Avriel Díaz, M.A., Executive Director-Elect at the Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE)

Recognition Ceremony, included chapter, student, and mentor awards and honorable mentions.

EnvironMentors is a transformative environmental science education and college access program that mentors and motivates high school students from underrepresented and underserved communities in the sciences. Founded as a local program in Washington, D.C., EnvironMentors has established chapters nationwide through partnerships with universities and nonprofit organizations. Over 2,800 high school students and college mentors have directly benefited from the program since its inception, with many more to come as the program continues to grow and scale.

Learn about the EnvironMentors program here and explore the 2023 EnvironMentors National Science Fair here.

Click here to donate today!